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Russia: DPRK-US Differences Hamper Statement Implementation
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Russian negotiator Sergei Razov said on Friday that the differences between the United States and North Korea hampered the process of the six-party talks on Korean Peninsula nuclear issue.

North Korea and the United States remained greatly divided, particularly on the financial sanctions issue, said Razov. "Their difference is the major obstacle to implementing the joint statement of September."

The week-long talks, also involving China, South Korea and Japan, ended with a chairman's statement but no breakthrough on Friday afternoon. No resumption date has been set yet.

The chairman's statement said the six parties agreed to implement the joint statement of September 19, 2005 as soon as possible "in a phased manner."

Under the joint statement, North Korea agreed to abandon its nuclear program in exchange for economic aid and security guarantees.

"The six-party talks mechanism plays an irreplaceable role in peacefully solving the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue. Russia firmly supports the six-party talks process," Razov said.

Formally known as the second phase of the fifth round since 2003, the talks resumed on Monday after a 13-month suspension.

(Xinhua News Agency December 23, 2006)


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